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Hedging Corn and Soybeans

RSS By: Howard Tyllas, AgWeb.com

Howard Tyllas is currently a member of the Chicago Board of Trade and registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission as a floor broker and as a Commodity Trading Advisor.

WASDE Report 1/12/2012

Jan 12, 2012

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WASDE Report for 1/12/12

OILSEEDS: U.S. oilseed production for 2011/12 is estimated at 91.2 million tons, up 0.2 million tons from last month. Larger crops for soybeans and canola are partly offset by reductions for cottonseed, sunflowerseed, and peanuts. Soybean production is estimated at 3.056 billion bushels, up 10 million based on increased yields. The soybean yield is estimated at 41.5 bushels per acre, up 0.2 bushels from the previous estimate. Soybean crush is lowered 10 million bushels to 1.615 billion reflecting industry-reported data through the first quarter of the marketing year. Soybean exports are projected at 1.275 billion bushels, down 25 million from last month and down 226 million from 2010/11. Soybean ending stocks are projected at 275 million bushels, up 45 million. Soybean product changes include a lower soybean oil extraction rate, lower projected soybean oil exports, and increased soybean oil ending stocks.

The 2011/12 U.S. season-average soybean price range is narrowed 25 cents on both ends of the range to $10.95 to $12.45 per bushel. The soybean oil price is forecast at 50.5 to 54.5 cents per pound, unchanged from last month. The soybean meal price is projected at $290 to $320 per short ton, up 10 dollars on both ends of the range.

Global oilseed production for 2011/12 is projected at 457.4 million tons, down 0.3 million with lower soybean production more than offsetting higher projections for sunflowerseed and rapeseed. Global soybean production is projected at 257 million tons, down 2.2 million mostly due to lower production forecasts for South America. The Argentina soybean crop is projected at 50.5 million tons, down 1.5 million due to lower projected area and yields. Excessive heat and dry conditions since December throughout much of the principal growing area is expected to limit soybean plantings and reduce yields from earlier expectations. The Brazil soybean crop is reduced 1 million tons to 74 million reflecting hot, dry conditions in recent weeks, especially in the second largest producing state of Parana where planting was more than half completed by late October. Favorable growing conditions in the main center-west region are expected to partly offset crop losses in the south. Global sunflowerseed production gains mostly reflect larger crops in Russia and Ukraine. Preliminary official harvest data from the State statistical agency indicate a higher yield for Russia, resulting in a record 9.6-million-ton crop. Ukraine sunflowerseed production is projected higher at a record 9.5 million tons based on increased harvested area. Other changes include increased rapeseed production for Australia and lower cottonseed production for India.

Global oilseed trade for 2011/12 is projected at 113.1 million tons, down 0.9 million mainly reflecting reduced soybean trade. Lower soybean exports for Argentina and the United States are only partly offset by an increase for Brazil. Imports are reduced for EU-27, Russia, Taiwan, Japan, and Turkey. Soybean imports for China are unchanged at 56.5 million tons. Global oilseed ending stocks are projected at 74.8 million tons, down 0.7 million from last month as reduced soybean stocks in Brazil and Argentina are only partly offset by higher U.S. soybean ending stocks.

WHEAT: U.S. wheat ending stocks for 2011/12 are projected slightly lower this month as reductions in expected domestic use mostly offset higher projected exports. Food use is projected 5 million bushels lower based on flour production data recently reported by the North American Millers' Association for July-September 2011. Feed and residual use is projected 15 million bushels lower as December 1 stocks, reported in the January Grain Stocks, indicate lower-than-expected disappearance during September-November. Seed use is raised 4 million bushels based on the winter wheat planted area reported in Winter Wheat Seedings. Projected exports are raised 25 million bushels based on the pace of sales and shipments to traditional markets. Increases for Hard Red Winter, White, and Soft Red Winter wheat more than offset a reduction for Hard Red Spring wheat. Ending stocks are projected 8 million bushels lower at 870 million. The 2011/12 season-average farm price is lowered 10 cents per bushel on each end of the range to $6.95 to $7.45 per bushel.

Global wheat supplies for 2011/12 are projected 2.7 million tons higher with production raised for Kazakhstan, Brazil, and Russia. Kazakhstan production is raised 1.5 million tons as nearly perfect growing season weather is reflected in a new record yield. Production is raised 0.8 million tons for Brazil, in line with the latest government estimate. Production for Russia is raised 0.2 million tons reflecting the latest official estimate.

Lower 2011/12 projected exports for Australia are more than offset by increases for the United States and Russia. Global consumption is raised with a 1.0-million-ton increase in expected domestic disappearance in Kazakhstan where record supplies will be difficult to store and maintain. Global ending stocks for 2011/12 are projected 1.5 million tons higher at 210.0 million.

COARSE GRAINS: U.S. feed grain supplies for 2011/12 are projected higher as an increase in estimated corn production more than offsets a reduction for sorghum. Corn production is estimated 48 million bushels higher with a 0.5-bushel-per-acre increase in yield and a 45,000-acre increase in harvested area. Sorghum production is lowered 32 million bushels with yields estimated 0.9 bushels per acre lower and harvested area reduced 503,000 acres.

Corn use for 2011/12 is raised with higher exports. Exports are projected 50 million bushels higher reflecting the strong pace of sales to date and reduced prospects for Argentina. Ending stocks are projected 2 million bushels lower at 846 million bushels. The 2011/12 season-average farm price for corn is lowered 20 cents per bushel on each end of the range to $5.70 to $6.70 per bushel. Prices received by producers to date have remained well below prevailing cash bids limiting the upward potential for the season-average farm price.

Other 2011/12 feed grain changes this month include a reduction for sorghum feed and residual use and an increase for barley feed and residual use, as indicated by the December 1 stocks. Sorghum exports are reduced with the smaller crop and sluggish export sales. The sorghum farm price is projected 10 cents per bushel lower on both ends of the range to $5.60 to $6.60 per bushel based on reported prices to date. The barley farm price is projected at $5.15 to $5.65 per bushel compared with $5.20 to $5.80 per bushel last month as reported farm prices for malting barley drag down the season average for all barley. The oats farm price range is narrowed 5 cents per bushel on both ends of the range to $3.25 to $3.55 per bushel.

Global coarse grain supplies for 2011/12 are nearly unchanged this month as higher corn production in the United States, Ukraine, EU-27, and Russia is mostly offset by lower expected corn production in Argentina and the lower sorghum production estimate for the United States. Global barley and oats production are also raised, mostly reflecting higher crop estimates from Russia.

Argentina 2011/12 corn production is lowered 3.0 million tons as extended dryness since late November and periods of extreme heat in late December and early January have sharply reduced yield prospects. Recent rains have brought much needed relief from high temperatures and dryness and are expected to stabilize crop conditions, but substantial damage has been done, especially to corn that was exposed to heat during pollination and early grain fill. Corn production is raised 1.5 million tons for Ukraine based on the latest official indications of record yields and output. EU-27 and Russia corn production are each raised 0.4 million tons based on the latest official estimates. Brazil corn production is unchanged as rising area prospects for second crop corn offset a reduction in first crop yields resulting from December and early January dryness in the southern growing areas.

Global corn trade for 2011/12 is raised slightly with lower projected corn exports from Argentina more than offset by higher exports from the United States and Russia. Imports are raised 1.0 million tons for China, more than offsetting reductions for Syria and Taiwan. World corn ending stocks are raised 1.0 million tons as lower stocks in Argentina are more than offset by higher stocks in Ukraine and China. At 128.1 million tons, global stocks are nearly unchanged from 2010/11.

SUGAR: Projected U.S. sugar supply for fiscal year 2011/12 is decreased 578,000 tons, raw value, from last month, mainly due to lower imports from Mexico. Mexico's sugar exports are reduced to reflect lower availability, as production is dropped based on lower-than-expected sugarcane yields and sugar recovery from harvested sugarcane for the season to date. Also, Mexico's sugar imports are lowered to reflect the slow pace of entries under two previously announced tariff rate quotas (TRQ). Other reductions in U.S. supplies include a minor reduction in production (Texas) and TRQ imports from Dominican Republic. Sugar use in the United States is unchanged from last month.

LIVESTOCK, POULTRY, AND DAIRY: The 2012 forecast of total red meat and poultry production is raised from last month, largely reflecting increased pork production. USDA's Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report estimated that the second-half 2011 pig crop was just over 2 percent higher than 2010 and indicated that producers plan a slight decline in sows farrowing in the first half of 2012. However, with continued gains in pigs per litter, more hogs are expected to be available for slaughter and the 2012 pork production forecast is raised from last month. Beef production is little changed from last month although adjustments are made to the quarters. USDA will release its Cattle report on January 27, providing an indication of producer intentions for heifer retention in 2012 and feeder calf availability. Poultry production forecasts are unchanged. Egg production is lowered slightly for 2012. For 2011, small changes are made, with beef and pork production estimates raised, but broiler and turkey estimates lowered. The egg production estimate is unchanged.

Trade forecasts for beef, pork, broilers, and turkeys are unchanged for 2012. Beef, pork, and turkey estimates for 2011 are unchanged but broiler exports are raised due to stronger-than-expected shipments in October.

Cattle prices for 2012 are unchanged from last month. The annual average hog price is lowered reflecting a lower first-quarter price forecast. The first-quarter broiler price is raised but the annual price range is unchanged. Turkey and egg prices are raised from last month. Prices for 2011 are adjusted to reflect December estimates.

The milk production forecast for 2011 is lowered slightly on lower expected cow numbers for the fourth quarter, but the forecast for 2012 is unchanged from last month. Larger-than-expected cheese imports for 2011 and into 2012 boost fat-basis import forecasts, but the strength of cheese imports in 2012 is offset by lower expected imports of skim products resulting in a lower 2012 skim-solids import forecast. The skim-solids exports estimate for 2011 is raised on higher-than-expected October exports.

The forecast 2012 cheese price is lowered, but forecasts for nonfat dry milk (NDM) and whey prices are raised. The higher whey price is expected to more than offset the lowered cheese price forecast, resulting in a higher forecast Class III price. The higher forecast NDM price results in a higher Class IV price. The all milk price for 2012 is raised to $18.30 to $19.10 per cwt.

COTTON: This month's 2011/12 U.S. cotton estimates include slightly lower production and lower exports, resulting in a net increase in ending stocks. Production is lowered 153,000 bales, as a reduction for upland cotton in Texas is partially offset by higher estimated extra long staple (ELS) cotton production. Domestic mill use is unchanged. Exports are reduced 300,000 bales to 11.0 million due to lower U.S. supplies and strong competition from foreign exports. Ending stocks are raised to 3.7 million bales, equivalent to 25 percent of total use. The forecast marketing-year average price received by producers of 86 to 94 cents per pound is narrowed 1 cent on each end of the range.

The world 2011/12 cotton estimates show slightly lower production compared with last month, with consumption reduced about 1 percent. Production is reduced mainly in India and the United States. Consumption is estimated 1.0 million bales lower for China, as the substantial accumulation of cotton in the national reserve is expected to support prices and constrain mill use. Consumption also is reduced for Thailand. World ending stocks are raised 700,000 bales to 58.4 million. The forecast stocks-to-use ratio of 53 percent is above both the 5- and 10-year averages.

RICE: The U.S. 2011/12 rice crop is estimated at 185.0 million cwt, down 3.1 million from the previous estimate due primarily to lower yields. Average yield is estimated at 7,067 pounds per acre, down 100 pounds per acre from last month, but an increase of 342 pounds per acre from 2010/11. Harvested area is estimated at 2.618 million acres, down 6,000 acres from the previous estimate. Long-grain rice production is estimated at 116.4 million cwt, down 1.1 million from last month, and combined medium- and short-grain production is lowered nearly 2.0 million to 68.6 million. Rice imports for 2011/12 are unchanged from last month.

The National Agricultural Statistics Service's (NASS) Rice Stocks reported total rough rice stocks at 146.9 million cwt as of December 1 and total milled stocks at 6.2 million (9.1 million cwt on a rough-equivalent basis). Total rice stocks on a rough-equivalent basis are 155.9 million, down 15 percent from a year earlier. Long-grain stocks as of December 1 are estimated at 96.9 million (rough-equivalent basis) and combined medium- and short-grain stocks at 56.2 million.

Rice 2011/12 domestic and residual use is lowered 3.0 million cwt to 124.0 million cwt-all in the long-grain class. Long-grain domestic and residual use is projected at 89.0 million cwt, and combined medium- and short-grain at 35.0 million. The decrease in domestic and residual use is implied from the higher-than-expected December 1 stocks estimate. All rice exports are lowered 1.0 million cwt to 90.0 million-all in the long-grain class. The pace of exports and sales of long-grain rice is lagging based on U.S. Bureau of Census data through October and U.S. Export Sales data through December. Long-grain exports to the Western Hemisphere have been lagging due to competition from South America, principally Brazil. Additionally, long-grain exports to the Middle East have been lagging due to strong competition from other suppliers. Conversely, the pace of sales of combined medium- and short-grain rice is supportive of the current export forecast. The 2011/12 rough rice export projection is lowered 1.0 million cwt to 33.0 million, while exports of combined milled and brown rice are unchanged at 57.0 million cwt (rough-equivalent basis). All rice ending stocks for 2011/12 are projected at 38.5 million cwt, up 0.9 million from last month, but down 10.0 million from 2010/11. Long-grain rice ending stocks are forecast at 20.6 million cwt, up 2.9 million from last month, but a decrease of 15.1 million from the previous year. Combined medium- and short-grain rice ending stocks are projected at 15.2 million cwt, 2.0 million below last month, but an increase of 5.1 million from 2010/11.

The 2011/12 long-grain, season-average farm price range is projected at $13.50 to $14.50 per cwt, unchanged from last month, while the combined medium- and short-grain farm price range is projected at $15.00 to $16.00 per cwt, down 50 cents per cwt on each end. The all rice season-average farm price is forecast at $13.80 to $14.80 per cwt, down 20 cents per cwt on both ends of the range.

Global 2011/12 rice production, consumption, and ending stocks are raised slightly, and trade is lowered from a month ago. The increase in global rice production of 0.6 million tons to a record 461.4 million tons is due primarily to larger forecast crops for Bangladesh and Cambodia, which are partially offset by reductions for Brazil, Pakistan, North Korea, and the United States. Larger forecast Aus and Aman seasonal rice crops in Bangladesh led to the forecast record crop at 34.0 million tons, up 1.0 million from a month ago. Global domestic disappearance (includes post-harvest losses) is raised mostly due to increases for Cambodia and Thailand. Global trade is lowered as import forecasts are reduced for Bangladesh, the Philippines, and Russia. Export 2011/12 forecasts are lowered for Brazil, Thailand, and the United States and raised for Cambodia. Global 2011/12 ending stocks are forecast at 100.1 million tons, up 0.6 million from last month, an increase of 2.9 million from 2010/11, and the largest stocks since 2002/03. Global ending stocks are up primarily due to increases for Bangladesh, Thailand, and the United States, which are partially offset by reductions for the Philippines and Brazil.
 

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